No wolf is higher in stature than any other wolf, save one. Their ancient Grandfather-god, he who walks where no tree has ever known the taste of the logger’s axe, and where the northern lights flow like meltwater down the mountains. The Grandfather-god wears a silver circlet with a stone of coniferous amber upon his brow, containing a fossilized star. He stands high enough to lap at the cool waters of the winter sky, and sleeps beneath the branches of the great red spruce rooted at the base of the world. His breath is the mist that blankets the pines, and his teeth are the shadows of the mountains against the sunrise, poised to swallow the world.
It is possible for lesser wolves to win the favor of the Grandfather-god. To do so, they must travel deep into the forest, where the mist grows thick and the trees grow tall. They must hunt one of the deer-god’s bull seraphim, massive beasts with horns of black quartz and coats of dappled gold. They must complete this task unaided, and feast deeply of the god-creature’s burning ichor. If they are able to survive these trials, then they may ask the Grandfather-god to grant them a single wish.
In the lupine tongue, there exists no direct translation for the word “wish”. Instead, the closest approximation would be “satiation of hunger”, as this is all that most wolves ever truly desire. Some wolves hunger for the sweet, lean taste of safety, to be granted passage to the Grandfather-god’s ancestral lands, where their pups will never know the fear of man. Some wolves hunger for the rich, red smell of youth, to be able to run as they once could, and never again grow old. But the cleverest among them hunger for meat of a different sort. They hunger for strange knowledge, and forbidden secrets.
The cleverest wolves ask for nothing other then a slice of the Grandfather-god’s own flesh.